For the average person, a longboard between 9’2″and -9’8″ with a flat rocker, increased thickness, wide outline around the nose, soft rails, and a long and wide base single fin without side bites make an excellent nose rider.
Choosing a longboard will depend on preference, but knowing how each aspect of surfboard design contributes to the function will help you to buy a suitable surfboard without actually riding one. Let’s look into a different element of surfboards and see how each component contributes to noseriding.
What makes the longboard a nose rider?
While it’s possible to noseride many types of longboards, certain features will help a surfer to noseride.
1. A Wider Outline
Wider width helps to stabilise the board. When the board is wider, it takes much more force to tilt the surfboard to push a rail into the water. Therefore, the nose rider’s longboard is typically around 23 inches wide.
How width is distributed is important too. Having width maintained throughout the board keeps the board stable while a surfer walks on the board and stands on the nose. Also, a wider square tail increases the board’s stability while sacrificing maneuverability.
2. Flat Rocker
A flat rocker is generally associated with speed because it increases the contact surface area of the surfboard at a given moment. Flat rocker also reduces the board’s maneuverability because there is more board in contact with water; it requires more force to dig the rail in the water.
Therefore, a flatter rocker improves the board’s stability while noseriding or walking on the board.
3. Longer Length
The longer length helps the surfer to noseride. Having extra length allows the board to keep in contact with water while riding and prevents the tail end of the board from lifting when the whole body weight is close to the nose.
During an interview, Devon Howard, one of the finest longboard riders, said he would recommend an “average” person to ride 9’6″-9’8″.
While many argue this will be too long and unnecessary, a longboard at this length will optimise for noseride while sacrificing maneuverability.
When the board reaches the 9’6″ range, you cannot maneuver the surfboard like minimal/mid-length. It takes time to respond, and you cannot force a direction change with this board.
This makes a fantastic rose rider, providing extra stability while walking on a board or nose ride.
4. Long Single Fin
Having a single fin is better than with side bites. Sidebites are great when performing a turn, but stability is better than maneuverability when noseriding.
A more extended fin base also helps keep the board stable while noseriding. A longer fin base adds resistance to moving water when pressure is applied on the side. Therefore, to make the same turn, a lot more force is required to turn the board.
The rake plays an important role, too: a more upright fin helps the surfer to maneuver the board more quickly, and a more curved/raked fin gives the surfer a more solid/stable feel.
Noserider longboard from leading manufacturers.
A Hawaiian surfing legend, Donald Takayama, built one of the most popular longboard surfboard brands, originated in Hawaii. The brand has built a reputation on mid-length and longboards.
As the outline suggests, this model is built for noseriding: wider outline, descent thickness, broad square tail with low rocker.
McTavish, from Australia, is a living surfing legend. He not only participated in leading the surfing culture in Australia but also helped the transition from a longboard to a shortboard.
As the name suggests, this board design was popular in the 60s, and Mctavish kept building this model due to high demand.
This retro style is beautiful, but some argue that a narrow nose does not help noseride on smaller days. Some beginner surfers may find it challenging to ride the board.
Can you noseride performance longboard?
You can noseride performance longboard. There are plenty of examples of noseriding by male and female surfers during longboard competitions. Most competitors use performance longboards during competition.
However, if you want to optimise your noseriding without much experience, a specifically designed surfboard can help you overcome the lack of skill to a certain degree.
Can You Noseride 7″6 or Minimal?
Noseriding minimal can be challenging. It’s possible to do hang Five, where a surfer places one foot closer or on the nose of the board; minimal does not have enough length to perform a proper nose ride or hang-ten.
Here are some examples of experienced surfers attempting to nose ride while riding minimal surfboards.
How long the board has to be To Noseride?
To noseride, the longboard needs to be at least 9 feet for an average-sized person.
How To Improve Nose Riding and Crosswalk On A Longboard?
First, to noseride, you must learn to walk up and down the board comfortably. Walking up and down the longboard is called a crosswalk because your feet and legs naturally cross each other as you move up and down the board.
Here are some tips on crosswalks and noseriding.
- Relax your upper body. If you watch a person stepping forward to nose ride, you can see their arms are raised by their side relaxedly and naturally moves gently to improve balance. A relaxed upper body reduces the lower limb’s tension and helps keep the motion fluid while cross-stepping.
- Practice on Land: Draw a line on the floor and practice crosswalk. If you are on a timber floor, choose your line and gently move back and forward. It does not need to be big steps. Gently place your foot, crossing your legs. No need to make a loud noise but no need to be exceptionally quiet either.
- Choose steeper waves and ride deep in the pocket. Noseriding requires the board to be positioned in a more vertical part of the wave, the bag of the wave. This is counterintuitive as many people assume you should nose ride in the softer part of the wave. Fight your instinct and try to take off late, and do not back off when the tide starts to pick up.